Electric cars are not cheap, and an average EV purchase price in 2021 was about $56,437 while an average gas car purchase price was about $10,000 less. This means that buying an entry-level EV is similar to buying an entry-level luxury combustion engine car. If you add about $2,000 for the Level 2 home mounted charger, it means that EVs cost a lot more money.
Even though EV prices are becoming lower while gasoline prices are record-high, people are not sold on the idea of owning an EV just yet, at least not before the “cheap” EV market arises. However, the 2022 Nissan Leaf S 40kW is now the cheapest electric car in 2022 because it costs about $28,365 without options.
The 2022 Mini Cooper SE Signature costs $30,750 while the Chevrolet Bolt EV 1LT costs $31,995. If you want a slightly larger, but similarly priced Chevy electric car, you should also check out the $33,995 Chevrolet Bolt EUV 1LT.
Lastly, the 5th cheapest electric car in 2022 is the Mazda CX-30 which costs about $34,645 without any options. If you want a luxury EV, you will have to pay at least $45,000 for a relatively entry-level German premium small EV.
2022 Nissan Leaf S 40kW – $28,365
The 2022 Nissan Leaf S costs $4,245 less than the 2021 model which makes it the least expensive EV currently on sale in 2022. However, the Nissan Leaf S really does not seem like the cheapest EV out there, yet is instead a really compelling package for anyone wanting to make a transition towards a cleaner future.
The 40kWh battery gives the Leaf about 150 miles of range while the upscale-looking interior offers better quality than much more expensive EVs from this list. The Nissan Leaf S offers great value and is probably the most value-oriented EV out there, not just because of the price tag, but also what you get for it.
2022 Mini Cooper SE Signature – $30,750
If you want a car known for its great breadth of ability, but you want to combine that with an EV platform, then the Mini Cooper SE Signature is a great choice, especially for those who are already familiar with this iconic car. However, the Mini only gets a 32.6kWh battery which can only give you up to 100 miles of range which is not all that great.
However, the Mini recharges a lot faster than the Leaf which means that it might be a better choice for city driving. Either way, the Mini does lack when it comes to driving as it is rather stiff and compromised, something many cars struggle with because they were never intended for an electric platform.
2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV 1LT – $31,995
Probably one of the best “cheap” electric cars these days, the facelifted 2022 Chevy Bolt EV 1LT manages to come with an almost $6,000 discount which puts it firmly in the crosshairs of many bargain hunters from all around the world.
The Bolt EV comes with a relatively large 65kWh battery which gives it almost 260 miles of range which is more or less like the Mini Cooper and the Nissan Leaf combined. That is why the 2022 Chevrolet Bolt is one of the best bargain EVs on the market right now.
2022 Chevrolet Bolt EUV 1LT – $33,995
If you want to combine the performance and efficiency of the regular Bolt EV 1LT with the practicality of a larger car then the Chevrolet Bolt EUV 1LT is a great choice. Chevy likes to call the EUV an SUV, but the lack of AWD somewhat negates that. Either way, it’s a great family EV and likely the best family value bargain out of all cars here.
Also, the Bolt EUV looks far better than the egg-shaped Bolt EV which gives it somewhat of a premium presence. If you like the look of the Bolt EUV, then you are likely going to be satisfied with everything the EUV can offer.
2022 Mazda CX-30 – $34,645
The 5th cheapest EV you can buy these days is the $34,645 Mazda CX-30 SUV. It may sound too good to be true that an SUV from a brand as famous as Mazda costs only $34,645, but there is a catch and a big one. Firstly, the CX-30 comes with a measly 35.5kWh battery which can only give you up to 100 miles of range.
Secondly, the CX-30 can only charge with up to 50kWh chargers which makes it the slowest-charging car in this group. It looks weird and it lacks space while the engine offers lackluster levels of performance. The CX-30 is by far the worst car on this list and therefore should be avoided, especially for the price.
Is a cheap EV worth it?
You are not rich enough to buy cheap things means that buying the cheapest items from each category usually means you will be replacing them more often which negates the whole purpose of saving money. However, this is not completely the case with some cheaper EVs such as the Bolt, the Bolt EUV, and the Leaf, while other cars from this list are simply not worth it.
They are cheap for an EV, but you can buy many more capable traditional combustion engine cars and even hybrids that can offer you more overall.
What makes a good electric car?
It’s no secret that high prices correlate with high-quality products, but a good electric car also needs to be reasonable when it comes to price. Secondly, it needs to be convenient which means that it offers a relatively sizeable battery with at least 200 miles of range and that it can be charged easily and quickly.
Moreover, a good EV needs to be packed with all the latest technology without making the car feel difficult to use on a daily basis. It needs to be comfortable, good-looking, built sustainably, and it needs to be dependable.
Should I buy an electric car?
Buying an electric car requires you to make compromises on your daily routines which means that EVs are a bit needier when compared to gasoline engines. If you are able to live the EV life which means installing a home-mounted charger or having the ability to charge it at work or anywhere else conveniently.
On the other hand, if you can’t be bothered with waiting for it to charge and you just want to have a car you can always rely on, a gasoline car is still the better choice overall.